Give Thanks In All Things
2 Corinthians 13:5a: Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; . . .
*Examine yourselves* is a command we don*t often hear. It is a command that some people don*t even want to hear, much less obey. Knowing that we are in the faith and on the way to Heaven is a precious thing. Being unsure that we are on the way to Heaven is a troubling thing. Knowing that we are not on the way to Heaven is a heavy burden. The Bible teaches that God loves us and wants to take us to Heaven. If we are on the right path to Heaven, He wants us to know that and be thankful for it. If we are on the wrong path, He also wants us to know that so that we will be willing to get on the right path. Because God wants us to know where we are headed, the Bible gives many verses that can help us examine ourselves and know for certain that we are on our way to Heaven. In this article I will provide several verses that will help you to examine yourself.
1 Thessalonians 5:18: In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
*Give thanks* is another command that we don*t often hear. Like many other commands in the Bible, God gives us the command and then helps us to obey it. He gives the command to examine ourselves and then helps us do that. He gives the command to give thanks and then helps us do that.
Those that know for certain they are headed for Heaven are thankful. They don*t need a holiday to be thankful. They are thankful every day. They have thankfulness built into them. They have far more to be thankful for than unbelievers. Gratitude should be a way of life for Christians. One of the differences between those that are headed for Heaven and those that are not is an attitude of gratitude. When God saves people He changes unthankful people into thankful people. Gratitude is almost always the first or the second thing that is apparent in people who receive Jesus. I cannot remember anyone who did not say thank you within moments after receiving Jesus. Salvation is a gift of God. Before they receive the gift they are not grateful for it and cannot be grateful for it. When they have the gift of salvation they are automatically thankful for it.
Ephesians 2:8: For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Having a thankful heart is part of salvation. Saved people have been saved *by grace* and *through faith.* Being saved is the gift. The grace of God is the cause of the gift, faith is the means of the gift and gratitude is one result of the gift. The Bible does not specifically say that gratitude is the fruit of the Holy Spirit but I believe that it is.
Strong*s Concordance gives this definition of the word grace:
The divine influence upon the heart, including gratitude.
When the grace of God goes to work in the heart and life of a man or woman they automatically become thankful. And they become thankful to God.
Ephesians 2:8-9: For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Many people believe that they can get to heaven by doing a lot of good things. When they believe that, they become thankful to themselves, if anyone. If they have received the gift of salvation from God they will be thankful to God. Being unthankful is evidence that we may not be saved. Unthankfulness is one of the characteristics of unsaved people. They can say *thank you* and not mean it. God puts unthankfulness smack dab in the middle of two lists of some heavy duty sins.
Romans 1:21: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
2 Timothy 3:2-4: For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful unholy, 3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, 4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
I am not to examine you but you ought to examine yourself. You do not owe me the answers to my questions but you owe them to yourself. Are you thankful? And are you thankful to God? If you are thankful to God it can be one clue that you are a Christian and on the way to Heaven. If you are not thankful to God it can a clue that you are not forgiven and on your way to Heaven.
1 John 5:13a: These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, . . .
Do you know for certain that when you die you will go to heaven? If you do know that it is one clue that you are on the way to Heaven. If you do not know for certain that you are on the way to Heaven it is a clue that you are not.
John 3:3: Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
Have you been born again? If you have been born again and know it, it is a wonderful clue that you are on your way to Heaven. Being born again can be a very mysterious thing for those who have not had that experience. If you have been born again God wants you to know it. The Bible explains how that happens. It happens when we receive Jesus into our hearts.
John 1:11-12: He came unto his own, and his own received him not. 12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:
Becoming a child of God and being born again speak of the same experience. When we receive Jesus into our hearts we become children of God and we become born again. Have you received Jesus into your heart and been born again?
Romans 3:23: For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
Romans 6:23: For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Even though the wages of our sin is death and Hell, Jesus has already been paid the wages for our sin when He died on the cross so that God can give us a free gift of eternal life instead of the eternal Hell that we have earned.
Romans 5:8: But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 8:16: The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
Is He telling your heart that you are already a child of God?
John 12:32: And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.
Is He drawing you unto Himself just now?
Luke 19:10: For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.
Is He seeking you just now?
John 6:37: All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.
Would you like to come to Him right now?
Romans 10:13: For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Would you like to ask Him to save you right now? Ask Him to. Then you will truly have something to be thankful for and you will be truly thankful.
Care to discuss Give Thanks In All Things with Ron?